Saturday, October 25, 2008

Just voted!

Greetings everyone!
I just filled out my absentee ballot and could be happier! I'm not usually that excited about elections, but this one is different. After eight years of a sagging economy, 2 wars and shoddy leadership, I voted for the smart guy. It's also refreshing to know that we could have our first African-American president in the White House.
As a young boy, I remember my father telling me stories of Dr. Martin Luther King and how things were back in the day. He would often tell me that he didn't think he'd see the day when America elected an African American for president. I know that he's probably smiling right now.
Don't get me wrong, I'm not voting for Obama just because he's African-American. We've had black people run for president before. Jesse Jackson, Al Sharpton and Alan Keyes. All of those dudes were highly unqualified clowns. I didn't give them a second thought. But now comes this dude with grand ideas of turning the country around. A guy who is trying to unify the nation instead of dividing it. This can only be good news for America. I got nothing against McCain. He seems like a real patriotic guy and, of course, a war hero.
But I think that America is looking for change. And he ain't it.

End of an era

Just got an email last week saying that longtime Editor & Publisher editor David Astor was laid off. I took it kinda hard because I saw David as a friend of our industry, and a friend of mine. Nobody covered syndication and cartoonist like Dave. As a budding cartoonist, I always read his columns. I thought that a sure sign of success would be to appear in one of his writing. Well, I did, and I have to thank David for help jump-starting my career. As many of you know, I myself was laid off (also know as 'fired') from the St. Petersburg Times last May, so I can really relate. It just makes me wonder what is going to happen to the publishing industry as a whole. We saw this train coming years ago but now its finally pulled into the station. I'm hoping that David can land on his feet really soon. You will be missed.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

"Diss N' That" makes a return

Morning, all:
After several years of hiatus, I'm going to start drawing my 'Diss N That' cartoon again for selected minority and alternative publications. It originally appeared in the Chicago Defender 4 years back when CNN's Roland Martin was editor. They were having some financial problems, so I pulled the cartoon. I've had some recent inquiries about it and its back, though I'm only going to draw 2 panels per week. The idea behind it is that readers write or email their best "Yo Mama" jokes (or "Snaps as we call them) and I illustrate the best ones and give the reader full credit for the caption. It's like reader/audience participation. I grew up lobbing "snaps" at unsuspecting victims on the school bus. Now if I can just find time to squeeze in 2 more cartoons to my already hectic toon schedule.

Friday, October 17, 2008

What the hell is a race card?

So, I was walking around in downtown DC with my tall, blonde friend. We spotted a wallet on a corner and decided to investigate. We check it a and found about $90 in cash an an array of credit cards. We immediately wanted to return it to its owner, but decided to find the closest police station.
We both noticed a very uptight looking white dude in a gray power-suit staring at us and shaking his head. My friend jokingly tells him that we weren't stealing the wallet and we were looking for its rightful owner. The uptight dude sarcastically replies "sure you are." Hearing this, I turn to the dude with more sarcasm. I tell him "Well, its a good thing I didn't pick up the wallet. Being a brutha, you probably would have called the police on the spot.'' Now at this point I usually get an uncomfortable grin or maybe an eye-roll from my Caucasian counterparts. But this dude looks at me and my beautiful white female friend and dead-pans… "Now you're pulling out the race card."

What the hell?!

Do people even talk like that? I was floored. Race card? Is that something that us minorities keep in our pockets and pull out to the bemusement of uptight white politicians? I was speechless, which isn't easy for me. DC is certainly a very strange place. I stated scratching my head about the whole "race card" thing. Do white people pull out the "white card" when it comes to racial profiling by police? Absurd statement, I know, but now you're getting the gist of what I was thinking. I've heard this term used to politicians like Jesse Jackson et al, but I was just a dude on the street corner. Somehow I've got to work this one into my cartoon "Cafe con Leche."
Any thoughts?

Friday, October 3, 2008

On the bus again

I'm sitting on the bus with the a lovely you woman named Jolie on my way to New York. It's Friday morning and I'm on my way to New York. With $40 round trip fares I'll be going back to the City more often. I had a pretty cool but rough second week at the Washington Times. There's still lots to learn, but I'm getting the hang of it. Drawing cartoons would seem to be a challenge, but so far so good. I've drawn all of my "Cafe con Leche" cartoons for the week and I'll be finishing up "Working It Out" while in NYC.
I'm really starting to like Washington, but I'll never get used to one aspect of the joint: Rampant slowness. People who know me also know that I move at a pretty rapid pace. It's just my nature. I do well in places like New York, San Francisco and Miami. But here in DC I had to hit the brakes a bit. People take their time with everything, which drives me crazy (I shouldn't have to wait a full minute at a traffic light). I mean, people really move at a snail's pace. St. Petersburg, Florida and Columbus, Ohio shouldn't be faster-paced cities than Washington, DC, but they are. Sad, I know.
My saving grace is my neighborhood. The pace is a bit normal and it's quite urban. I absolutely love it. The surrounding there help me focus on drawing my cartoon. I would compare it to Hell's Kitchen in NYC or River North in Chicago. Very busy, but nice.
Anyways, I'm in dire need of a cup of coffee. Hasta la proxima vez que te escribo!